Germany’s MHH Solartechnik gains UK foothold with Dulas acquisition

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The UK solar industry is about to be transformed by an exciting new partnership which sees significant investment from a German photovoltaic pioneer in Dulas, one of the UK’s most respected renewable energy firms.

The UK solar industry is about to be transformed by an exciting new partnership which sees significant investment from a German photovoltaic pioneer in Dulas, one of the UK’s most respected renewable energy firms. MHH Solartechnik, a subsidiary of BayWa r.e (Munich / Germany) and headquartered in Tübingen, has taken a majority stake in the wholesale solar product supply department of Machynlleth-based Dulas, which will retain a share of the business.

BayWa r.e is a wholly-owned subsidiary of BayWa AG and concentrates on all the Group’s activities in the field of renewable energies. BayWa AG is a German company with international operations specialising in wholesale, retail and service provision. Its business sector activities include operations in Agriculture, Building Materials and Energy. The deal has created a new company, Dulas MHH Ltd, which will be launched at the world’s largest photovoltaic event – Intersolar Europe in Munich (8th-10th June 2011), bringing much-needed guaranteed price competiveness and technical experience from Europe’s largest PV market to the UK wholesale solar market. Established in 1982, Dulas employs over 100 people in Machynlleth, Mid-Wales and Stirling, Scotland.

The organisation delivers projects across the world on solar, wind, biomass and hydro technologies. Among many recognitions of the company’s work are the REA Renewable Energy Company of the Year Award in 2009 and the Queens Award for Enterprise in 2004. Dulas’ 2010 turnover of £22m has seen significant growth through the April 2010 introduction of the Feed-in Tariff (FIT) legislation in the UK. German FIT legislation has demonstrated how effective such a mechanism can be in stimulating the PV market place and has been in place for over 10 years, creating an 8GW solar market. MHH Solartechnik’s presence in this market means that Dulas will benefit greatly with this new partnership.

The UK market, at approximately 109MW (as of 11th March 2011) of installed capacity, is comparatively very small and offers exciting opportunities for expansion. Thanks to the partnership, UK installers will be able to benefit from the maturity of German experience in logistics, economies of scale, product portfolio and security of supply whilst maintaining the ethics, standards and technical know how of the UK’s most experienced renewable energy solutions provider. Guy Watson the Director at Dulas who led the transaction said: “Dulas prides itself on being at the forefront of quality in UK solar technology. We’re an organically-grown company which, over the past 10 years, has become more market-driven through delivering important projects for private and public sector, such as the UK Government’s Low Carbon Buildings Programme for which we were a Framework Supplier. “The FIT has made the UK solar market an attractive proposition and not only for our traditional competitors but also new start-up wholesale operations benefitting from outside investment. It became an obvious strategic move for Dulas to partner with a major player from the most developed solar market in Europe.

“The cultural fit between Dulas and MHH Solartechnik is perfect: both companies have a shared ideology for offering not just high quality product but technical solutions, for developing customer relationships through outstanding customer support and for being very ethical organisations. Ian Draisey, now Managing Director of DulasMHH said “UK solar installers should be hugely excited by the opportunity to benefit from the unrivalled experience, an outstanding product portfolio and security of supply combined with the competitive pricing that Dulas MHH Ltd will bring to the marketplace.” Staff at Dulas, which has grown from 15 to over 100 in the past ten years, will see jobs secured and tied to Wales, while the new entity will be recruiting for new sales, marketing and technical roles. The remainder of Dulas’ operations, which includes renewable energy consultancy and turnkey project capabilities in wind, hydro, biomass, solar PV and International life saving solar solutions will be unchanged and secured by the deal. For BayWa r.e the deal is an important step to enter the solar technology wholesale business in Great Britain.

The Germans are confident that together with the good reputation of Dulas and the similar work ethics of the two companies the companies the business will be very successful. They look forward to providing continued commitment to delivering the very best solutions and high quality products whilst developing new customer relationships through the new organisation.” DulasMHH Ltd will be based at Dulas’ existing headquarters in Machynlleth, Mid-Wales. ENDS

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